By Raya Mzahdeh
The People v. Samantha Green trial reconvened on the afternoon of September 9, 2016, in Department 14, Judge David Rosenberg presiding. Ms. Green is being charged with the second-degree murder of her infant son, Justice Rees. Public Defender Tracie Olson is representing Ms. Green, and Deputy DAs Ryan Couzens and Robert Gorman are representing the prosecution.
The hearing began with a recalled witness, Detective Dean Nyland, who continued giving his testimony. He stated that during his March 30, 2015, interview with Frank Rees, Green’s boyfriend and father of the baby, Rees was vague about his drug use at first. He later admitted that he and Green had smoked methamphetamine together the week before she and Baby Justice went missing. He also admitted to administering to her a “butt shot” of about a fourth of a gram of methamphetamine on the morning of February 23, 2015.
The next witness that was recalled to give further testimony was Detective Polay, who interviewed Franks Rees at the Woodland Memorial Hospital on February 24, 2015. During the interview, Mr. Rees described Ms. Green’s behavior as “erratic” when he was with her earlier the same day that she arrived in Knights Landing to look for him. He claimed that she was “trippin’,” and that he suspected she had been going through postpartum depression. In addition, Rees’ information indicated that Green’s motivation for going out to Knights Landing was to find him with the woman she suspected he had been cheating on her with, known as “MC.”
The third witness to take the stand as a recalled witness was Detective Mike Glaser, who investigated the death of Baby Justice. Det. Glaser spoke to “CF,” a friend of Ms. Green and Mr. Rees, who had been at the Rees residence on February 23, 2015. Det. Glaser stated that there had been allegations that CF was down at the slough in Knights Landing where Ms. Green and Baby Justice had been.
Furthermore, CF confirmed to Det. Glaser that he and his girlfriend, “SR,” were at the Rees residence around noon on February 23. CF stated that Green had been acting “strange.” He elaborated that it surprised him when Green did not offer to give him a ride to where he and SR were headed after stopping by at the Rees residence. During Det. Glaser’s interview with SR, it was confirmed that CF had been with SR all day after leaving the Rees residence. SR also stated that Ms. Green’s behavior was “strange” on the afternoon that she and CF interacted with her at the Rees residence.
On February 27, 2015, Det. Glaser went to the Rees household and picked up Ms. Green to transport her to the police station for an interview. He sat with Green for about two hours, while they waited for Rees’ interview to end. During her interview, Green admitted that she took one “butt shot” on the Friday night before she went missing, two on Saturday, and one more sometime between Sunday and Monday. She also took six hits of methamphetamine via a pipe.
The witness who followed was Dr. Michael Wu of the Woodland Memorial Hospital. On February 25, 2015, Dr. Wu examined and discharged Ms. Green after she had already been admitted to the emergency room. His discharge papers indicated that Green was diagnosed with methamphetamine intoxication, dehydration, rhabdomyolysis (breakdown of muscle tissue), and cervical strain (neck muscle strain.)
The final witness to give her testimony was Crime Scene Investigator Stephanie Gill of the Yolo County Sheriff’s Office. CSI Gill stated that, on February 25, 2015, she and another investigator analyzed footprints at the scene where Ms. Green and Baby Justice were in Knights Landing. She and the other investigator concluded that whoever made the footprints was not wearing shoes, but was also not completely barefoot. Based on the appearance of the footprint and the patterns they observed, the investigators determined that there was some type of cloth or other material involved while the footprints were made.
After several witness testimonies, Judge Rosenberg declared the trial would resume on Monday, September 12, at 10 AM in Department 14.